Fur Real? Highlight of NY Fashion Week: Animal Skins

by Nicole
February 24, 2014

Upon expressing my outrage at the fur saturating the fall runways this Fashion Week to my mom, she gave me the equivalent of a shrug. This naturally outraged me even further. I love my mom; but she, like many others, are tired of the public discourse that feels like beating a dead horse (pun intended).

I often wonder why we must go over the horrors of the fur industry again and again when its cruelty seems blatantly obvious, but I assume the answer here is that it must not be that obvious to people. Lots and lot of people. Enough people to design collections revolving around fur, which was if not the focal point, a grand statement making accessory on models for Fall 2014. Flipping through Style.com brought me face to face with fur coats, fur shoulders, fur collars, fur paneling, fur sweaters (a new trend?), fur mittens, fur handbags and more. The lists goes on and never ends.

Even Betsy Johnson’s show surprisingly included real fur–(maybe it’s time we update that Fur-Free Retailers List, Humane Society?)–and I found myself frantically searching through the shows trying to find someone, anyone who did not drape a dead animal’s body on an outfit and call it “fashion.” Still searching.

As if to underscore the proliferation of fur on the runways, real-life fashionistas were draped in animal skins. And this photo of one fur-lover went nearly viral.

Wearing fur makes you the target of ridicule--so why do it?

Then a Marie Claire editor who also got stickered and photographed, (hard to tell if she is the gal in this photo, since stickering seems to be rampant) wrote a heated rebuttal, declaring that she was wearing vintage, and that she herself is opposed to buying new fur, but can’t help but wear her second-hand ones when it is so cold out.

Here’s a thought: people say fur keeps you warm, but fur coats are lined with satin or another equivalent material. Call me crazy, but when the fur is on the outside of the coat, how are you kept warm? It’s one of life’s big mysteries to me, as I look to the lining of a coat to speak to it’s true warmth.

Nevertheless, I pursue deeper reasons for the steady presence of fur in a world where beauty takes on so many more simpler and kinder forms. Let’s be real: the reason people wear fur isn’t warmth, it’s some outdated idea of glamour. But nothing can be glamorous when it comes from the suffering and death of animals, including life in crammed wire cages, death by anal electrocution or gas chambers, even being skinned alive. (Yes, it’s graphic–but if you don’t have the stomach to hear this, how do you think the animals feel?). So fashionistas, stick to these cruelty-free, but just as glamorous style statements.

-A really great red lip.

-The perfect white shirt–for women and men!

-The little black dress.

-Great pair of jeans–again, unisex.

Signature scent–preferably organic and natural.

Signature jewelry

 What is your favorite,  cruelty-free, style signature?

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Contributor Nicole is a native New Yorker and vegan. Often seen giving unsolicited shopping advice to strangers, she also loves seeing Broadway shows and spending time in parks. When Nicole isn't chewing someone's ear off, she can be found building online businesses for solopreneurs as 10 Carat Creations.


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